The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia has clarified reports about the visa cancellation and deportation of some Nigerians upon entry into the Kingdom.
The Saudi Arabian government had on Monday, November 13, cancelled the visa of 177 passengers airlifted by Nigeria’s major carrier, Air Peace, on arrival at the country from Kano, insisting that they be returned to Nigeria.
Consequently, 177 passengers were made to return on the same flight back to Nigeria while 87 passengers were cleared by Saudi immigration and allowed entry into Jeddah.
The Federal Government through the Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on Tuesday, urged all affected passengers of Air Peace who had their visas cancelled and subsequently deported from Saudi Arabia to remain calm as it has launched an investigation into the matter.
However, in a statement, Saudi authorities stated that the visas of the 177 Air Peace passengers from Nigeria upon Arrival in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia were cancelled for violating the country’s entry rules.
“The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Abuja would like to make a clarification about the media reports and social media releases concerning the deportation of Nigerian citizens at the point of entry into the Kingdom.
“The passengers, who were denied entry, and subsequently deported to their initial destinations, did not fulfill the entry conditions and requirements in accordance with the applicable rules and regulations of the Kingdom, as they submitted incorrect information to obtain a category of visa that does not apply to them, which was discovered upon their arrival.’’
The Royal Embassy stressed the importance of following the procedures and laws enacted by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for all visitors.
It stated, “The Royal Embassy would like to stress the importance of following the procedures and laws enacted by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for all visitors.
“Furthermore, all passengers should review all the documents to determine their conformity with the conditions before departing from their countries to the Kingdom.
“This procedure was not limited to Nigerian citizens only, but rather to citizens of other countries.’’